Friday, 31 July 2009

Innovation - a verb not a noun

Erica Hurley and I ran an 'innovation visioning' workshop for a KIN member organisation this week. The organisation is faced with a number of significant new external finanical and regulatory influences and constraints. This means that delivery of their services to the cost and quality required will require a radical rethink of the way they operate. The emphasis of the workshop was creating an innovative culture and climate, where ideas can flourish, be evaluated, nurtured and implemented. We were doing some post-workshop feedback which resulted in an 'aha' moment from one of the participants; 'I get it; innovation is not a noun, but a verb'. This neatly sums up what we were trying to do - create the conditions in which people can do smart things differently.

Monday, 20 July 2009

Advanced level product innovation, but where's the service or management innovation equivalent?

I was looking around the websphere for inspiring case-study examples of product and service innovation. I came across the following interesting examples of approaches to product innovation:
BMW's blurb is certainly hyperbole “We have created the perfect synthesis of architecture and process-oriented thinking”, but you've got to hand it to them when it comes to putting their money where their mouth is. I'm sure it's a terrific R&D facility, but I wonder if it does truly create innovative products? Their Open Innovation facility may do so but is not very 'open'. See their paper here
More inspiring is this 3 part McKinsey video presentation on product innovation at Italian design house Alessi; as you would expect, it is superbly well designed. Most impressive is the third segment, where founder Alberto Alessi explains why and how measuring the success of innovation is so important. His 5 measures, combining form, function and commercial metrics are really interesting.
OK, so there's lots out there on product innovation, but where's the equivalent for service or management innovation?

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Eames' implicit knowledge transfer

I was enthralled by Eames Demitrios' charming presentation about his grandparents' work. Charles and Ray Eames will be familiar to most through their iconic furniture, particularly their wireframe and timeless office chairs. What particularly struck me was Demitrios' engaging way of communicating, particularly his 'broth of images' (see about 5mins 40 secs). We all know that the best presentations are a good combination of visual imagery and narrative, but he takes this a stage further and provides a wave of simultaneous moving images, leaving an impression or gestalt, rather than facts or information. We deal in tacit knowledge transfer, explicit knowledge transfer; I guess this is an example of implicit knowledge transfer?